I did not get myself a copy of Impact. Just reviewing the book and not the Impact framework I did not see it as nessecary. Had impact been on sale like it was about a month or so ago I might have gotten my on copy (notch, notch, wink, wink).
Let’s start with those according to the feedback rules…
To me te book feels like a cookbook to get one specific game done (“type this here …”) at times. It however gives a good overview of most if not all ‘classes’ and possibilities of Impact and how to get up to speed with building a relatively small game with it. Using the accompanying level editor called Weltmeister Jesse shows you how to design levels, how to load them in Impact and bring the level to life. What else can you ask for?
Next to that more or less main goal of the book, you’ll get an overview of the whole process of game development. From initial idea to publishing (and possible deployment on iOS with a template Xcode project that comes with Impact). Good insights from someone who knows what he is talking about.
Finally it contains some heads up on HTML5 development. I’m afraid that is still nessecary with the way browser support is at the moment.
Another downside I think there is to the book is the intended audience as it states. Personally I don’t think this book is much use without having prior programming knowledge. If you have none, you’ll end up with a working game nonetheless, but I doubt you’ll understand why, how to change it or to build your own in any reasonable fashion.
Finally, usage of stats to analyze players behaviors is stressed, however, the examples may have been a bit more clear (I’m pretty much a GA noob)
Without having used the software, it seems like a real nice environment to work with. It comes with a good map editor, several debugging and profiling features. To help with the game mechanics there’s collision detection and particle systems and most needed features of the box so you can focus on the creative process.
It is a quick read and gets you up to speed with Impact in about a day (or two).